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Dripless Paint: Walls as Smooth as Quicksand
Dripless paint is thick at rest and fluid in motion. Groupon explains how this translates into an even coat of paint free from sagging and running.
Suddenly, the B-movie hero realizes what’s beneath his feet: quicksand, and the harder he struggles, the faster he'll sink. If a bit clichéd, the scene is at least more interesting than watching paint dry. But in fact, the same phenomenon imperiling our hero can help explain the mechanics of dripless paint.
At first glance, a pit of quicksand and a bucket of dripless paint have little in common. But zoom in on their molecular structure and the principle uniting both semi-liquids emerges: thixotropy. At rest, a thixotropic liquid appears to be a thick fluid with deliciously high viscosity. But when disturbed or deformed by some outside force, be it a paintbrush or a flailing aspiring action star, the viscosity plummets and it behaves like a much thinner liquid. Once the disturbance has stopped, it returns to its thicker resting state.
At home, this means that from the moment you dip a brush into a can of dripless paint to the moment you cease applying it to the walls, the paint is in its low-viscosity, liquid state and spreads easily across surfaces. Once wall-bound, though, the dripless paint reverts back to its more-solid, high viscosity state, preventing it from running, dripping, or sagging as it dries.